Signs of Tranquility - Metal , Modern and Melodic !
The Formation of Signs of Tranquility ….
“This project started with compositions Justin Davis (Drummer/Samples) had been
creating since 2013. Kaylie Haynes (Lead Vocals) and Kevin Shaw (Guitar) joined in
March 2019, and the creative chemistry became instantly apparent as we began to work
on the music together. Jace Pembroke (Bass) finalized the original line-up, and we went
into the studio late that year to start recording our self-titled album. We focused pretty
heavily on recording and creating during 2020, and this year, we’ve expanded to a
5-piece with the addition of a second guitarist, Sean Smith, and a new bassist, Steve
Justin “As for the name, I was looking for something unique, to the tune of nature and
tranquil. I had stumbled on the Tree of Life symbol somewhere at a down time in my life
and thought “Think would be a cool band logo, but what does it mean?” Tranquility
sounded like a good description and then added Signs before that. In context, it means
that no matter where you came from and what path you took, you can lift yourself up out
of the negatives and bring new life to yourself and those around you.
“The energy comes from past experiences from various events in our lives. We’ve all
gone through rough patches in our lives as well as really great experiences, and we’re all
fairly expressive people who need a way to convey and share our parts of the human
experience and hope that others relate. Music became our therapy and our way of
sharing our stories with the rest of the world.”
Kaylie “I feel like my vocals blend really well with this style of music, contrasting with the heavier elements like distorted guitars and the drums and meshing in with the melodic samples. I draw a lot on musical themes in the samples when writing a melody, and try and build vocal stacks that sit nicely over the guitars.
Kaylie-” I’m not classically trained, but I’ve taken voice lessons from several teachers over the past few years. Sina Hirsch helped me get started with in-person lessons in my area a
few years back, and I’ve taken a few one-off lessons from different teachers as well. In
the past year or so, I took pretty consistent virtual lessons with Marina La Torracca and a
few really pointed lessons from David Akesson - one of the few benefits of the pandemic
was being able to learn from artists from across the world who had more availability than
they usually would. Every teacher I’ve worked with has taught me something new. Then
it’s just a matter of practicing a bunch and playing with the tones and techniques they’ve
shared and to develop a style that feels like my own voice.
Kaylie- “I love words, and writing lyrics has always been one of the most natural parts of
the song writing process for me. I loved my English and literature classes in school, so I
definitely absorbed some literature influences there, and I’m highly influenced by other
lyricists that have really spoken to me. I don’t try and write about anything specific, or
honestly even try and force lyrics at all. The lyrics that have most impacted me are
genuine, honest, and sound effortless, like they’re coming straight from someone’s
thoughts. I do a lot of streams of consciousness singing in private to the instrumental
tracks to generate some ideas (this can get very random and even silly), and then
eventually land on a line or two that just sticks with me. Or sometimes certain lines will
just pop into my head, usually at inconvenient times, and stick with me for days. I try and
record these snippets into my phone or write them down right away. Then when I start to
get a decent collection of good lines, I arrange them into a theme, use a thesaurus to fit
the lines, the meter and rhyme scheme, and a good melody that fits the song.
The attraction to the heavier/darker side of music?
Kaylie: I love the intensity, the passion, the emotion in it. I feel things very deeply and
the emotional power in heavier and darker music captures and conveys so much.
Is the song writing process an easy one?
“’It's come pretty easily; Justin has done most of the arrangements to date and has
created templates for us to follow to keep our sound consistent. For our next album, us
writing process will likely change a lot with the new line-up. We all want to bring us
ideas to the table and bring in more complexity, really see where our creativity takes us.
We’re all pretty excited to start writing together, and all of us are passing new ideas back
and forth all the time right now.’
“The All Against Me video was largely the genius of our video director, Wacy Jahn. We
actually, started with a completely different idea, and he brought the room of mirrors idea
and we loved it and it just sort of took off from there. It turned into quite a decent project:
we ended up creating the room itself, creating and stringing up all of the mirrors, and
then of course the actual filming and production of the video. We were really blown
away when we saw the final product, and it captured our sound perfectly.
The Inspiration behind the music?
Kaylie: ‘’Probably the single defining moment that made me start was when I went out to
Oslo in 2018 for Conception's pre-listening party for their return EP. My travel partner and
I paid a little extra for a tour of Oslo from the band followed by lunch. This was a very cool
experience because we also got to meet other fans who told us cool things to see and took
us to some of the nearby bars. The band’s guitarist and his wife met us for beers in
Stockholm and shared about their writing process and marketing strategy and music in
general. That was when it really clicked for me that I wanted to do this too.’’
Justin: ‘’My first exposure to metal was Sevendust. It then branched out to the Nu Metal
scene and yes, was and still to this day big into Limp Bizkit. I also had the pleasure of
playing with Celldweller many years ago and they do the same thing, mixing metal music
with EDM elements. Some would say it's industrial and they are right to a degree. We
took that up a notch to elements you would hear the newer generation of DJs utilizing
‘’We draw influences from a lot of genres. It took us a while to figure out where we fit, and
we settled on melodic modern metal to the likes of Amaranthe, Ad Infinitum, Alia
Tempora, etc. We’re also heavily influenced by a lot of symphonic metal bands like
Epica, Within Temptation, Nightwish, Delain, Kamelot, Seven Spires etc. We also get a
lot of fan comparisons to Evanescence. What’s fun is being able to mix it up - some of
our songs have catchy hooks and dancey synths, we have some soulful ballads, and then
come in with some really heavy hitters, but all of them sound like us and our style and
flow together into an album nicely.
“’Our second single called “Alive and Well” will be released on 10/15/21 through DI
Records with a lyric video. Another single will be coming out later this year with a full
music video, and we’re getting very close to announcing the release date for the rest of
Top 6 albums of all time?
Since there’s 5 of us, we’ll each give you one:
Sean: Dead Heart in a Dead World - Nevermore
Steve: Puritanical Euphoric Misanthropia - Dimmu Borgir
Kaylie: The Black Halo - Kamelot
Kevin: Operation Mindcrime - Queensryche
Justin: DreamTheater 2013 Self-Titled Album
Official Website: signsoftranquility.com